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The Importance of Website Accessibility

Ensuring Inclusivity and Compliance In today's digital age, having an online presence is essential for individuals, businesses, and organizations of all kinds. However, ensuring that your website is accessible to everyone is not just a matter of good practice; it's a legal and moral imperative. In this article, we will explore why website accessibility matters and how to determine if your website needs to be accessible. Accessibility legislation varies from country to country, but in the... read more »

Hand-drawn map lying on grass next to a bow and arrow. The map shows a river, trees, mountains and a dotted line meandering across it, leading to a big red X.

We are going on a scavenger hunt!

Have you ever been on a scavenger hunt? It is an exciting and interactive recreational game in which participants work individually or in teams to find a list of specific items, solve riddles, or complete tasks within a designated area or timeframe. Typically organized for fun and adventure, scavenger hunts encourage participants to use their problem-solving skills, creativity, and teamwork to track down clues and complete challenges, often leading to a rewarding sense of accomplishment... read more »

On the left is a screenshot of the Access by Design website, showing their accessibility tool, navigation, and a large interactive graphic displaying some of their portfolio. If a mouse hovers over any one of them, it is raised gently and settles down again as the mouse moves away from it.  On the right is a screenshot of the same website in a plain format, with all of the accessibility options, page links and text over a plain white background

How do you balance aesthetics with accessibility?

Two images, same website There are two images above. The image on the left is of our website. The image on the right is also of our website. The content is identical. One perhaps looks rather more attractive than the other but if you are blind and are using a screen reader, they are the same. The difference between the two is the stylesheet. The stylesheet determines how a page is laid out, which fonts are... read more »

A lit lightbulb, floating in the air. 4 unlit lightbulbs lie on the floor below it

The Web Content Accessibility Guidelines, otherwise known as WCAG

What are the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines? This is perhaps the most common starting point when you first come across this thing called Website Accessibility. These guidelines, when followed, will help ensure your website is more accessible for disabled people. There seem to be two favoured ways of pronouncing WCAG.  The acronym “w cag” where the sound of the w is used, rather than spelling the letter The abbreviation “w c a g”, is where each letter is... read more »

A concrete ramp next to a concrete stair on a University Campus

A staircase and a ramp are both OK!

A perfect world? We would all love it if we lived in a world where every website or web portal was completely accessible to everyone, regardless of their ability or disability, wouldn’t we? Sometimes it cannot be done. A recent audit We have recently finished an audit of a web portal. There was a questionnaire that had to be filled in, before any of the modules could be started. The number of questions varied, with anything from 16... read more »

A web page containing an image of a young girl drinking from a mug. A beautiful dog is peacefully asleep on her lap. An arrow is pointing to a larger version of the same image.

Are having featured images on a web page important?

Asking ChatGPT I asked ChatGPT had to say and it gave me some excellent answers, including why adding an Alt Tag helps screen readers read out an accurate description. Yes, a featured image on a web page is important for several reasons: Visual Appeal: The featured image is usually the first visual element visitors see when they land on a web page. It helps to create a strong first impression and can significantly impact the overall... read more »

Graphic with Devops Logo and Tricentis Logo, Text reads Accessibility in Software Development and Testing. Photos of the particiapnts, from left to right: Simona Domazetoska, Senior Product Marketing Manager – Tricentis,  Paloma Oliveira, Developer Advocate, Software Engineer - Sauce Labs Scott Jehl, Web Product Designer & Developer Clive Loseby, Global Leader in Website Accessibility for Disabled People - Access By Design Alan Shimel, Founder & CEO - Techstrong Group

Website Accessibility Webinar

It is always wonderful meeting like-minded people! It was such a privilege to take part in a webinar about a subject so close to my heart: Accessibility in Software Development and Testing. I really appreciated the opportunity to meet and chat with others who are as passionate about website accessibility as I am. Many thanks to Devops for hosting the event, please follow this link to watch it. It is a long link, unfortunately, that may... read more »

A lit lightbulb, floating in the air. 4 unlit lightbulbs lie on the floor below it

What will a website accessibility audit give me?

Understanding why A website accessibility audit will provide you with valuable insights into the accessibility of your website for users with disabilities. Here are some of the key benefits and outcomes you can expect from a website accessibility audit: 1. Identification of accessibility barriers The audit will help you identify specific accessibility barriers and issues that may prevent people with disabilities from accessing and using your website effectively. These barriers can include problems with navigation, keyboard accessibility,... read more »

: A happy cartoon monkey is hanging from a vine. The text reads: “Filename: mky4653.jpg”, “Alt Tag is: mky4653.jpg”, “Alt Tag should be: Happy cartoon monkey hanging from a vine”

Please do not use Filenames as Alt Text

Hopefully, most of us have heard of Alt Text and how important it is. It is used to provide a description of an image, to allow blind people to make sense of what the image is. It is possible to create this easily when you upload an image to a website. It is also one of the most common accessibility fails that I come across in my website accessibility audits. Most automated accessibility checkers will... read more »

2 screenshots of the AA breakdown mobile website, containing the details of the car breakdown. The right-hand one was taken when the screen was pulled up, showing the extra text “No longer need assistance?” and the following link, in red: “Cancel this help request”.

Overlays do not just affect disabled people!

A great start to the week! Monday morning. My car won’t start and I have a one-hour drive home ahead of me. I drive a 22-year-old Volvo which I love very much but sometimes there is an issue with the immobiliser. Disconnecting the battery for a few minutes usually fixes it. It did not this time. After 5 mins and after 10 mins. I go online to the AA’s website to request help. Whilst waiting for the AA, I... read more »

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